Baseball Splits With Hamilton
April 13, 2013
Middlebury and Hamilton split a pair of NESCAC West games on Saturday afternoon on Forbes Field. The Continentals scored two runs on two hits in game one, but that would be all they needed as they came away with the 2-1 victory. Hamilton tied game two in the ninth, only to have the Panthers come back to win the game 5-4 in the bottom of the inning.
Middlebury struck for an unearned run in the first inning of game one after Tom Driscoll reached on an error. He later stole second and advanced to third on a single to center by Michael Morris. Driscoll scored with two outs on a SAC fly to right by Tom Rafferty.
Hamilton tied the game in the third inning with an unearned run of their own. Nick Taylor was hit by a pitch and moved to second on a bunt from Joe Jensen that ended in a Panther error. A bunt from Colin Henneberger moved runners to second and third before Gabe Klein was intentionally walked to load the bases. Taylor scored from third in a fielder’s choice to short by Sam Fuentes to knot the game at 1-1. Hamilton tried to salvage another run as Klein intentionally got caught in a rundown, but Jensen was thrown out at the plate.
Hamilton pitcher Jonathan Lane was lifted to start the sixth, as Tommy Moriarity came on in relief. Rafferty walked and was bunted to second by Max Araya. Hunter Merryman followed with a single to right, but Rafferty was gunned out at home on a rocket by Fuentes from right field.
Middlebury starter Logan Mobley walked the first two batters in the seventh and was lifted for Mark Dickerson. A balk, a fly out and a bunt single left the bases loaded for lefty Noah Bakker, who was brought on to face Klein, the Hamilton lefty. Klein earned a walk as the eventual winning run crossed the plate.
The Panthers threatened in the seventh inning as Andrew Lind walked and was bunted to second by Garrett Werner. Driscoll won a footrace to the bag with the Hamilton first baseman to put runners at the corners with two outs. Moriarity induced a ground out to end the game as he picked up the win to move to 1-2 on the season. Lane finished the game allowing five hits and no earned runs over five innings of work. Mobley (0-2) suffered the loss, allowing one earned run and one hit over six innings of work.
Merryman led the Panthers with a 2-3 effort, while five other players had hits, including a double from John Luke.
Hamilton scored an unearned run in the first inning of game two, with Middlebury taking a 2-1 lead in the third inning. A single to right by Merryman plated Driscoll, while John Luke drew a bases loaded walk.
Rafferty doubled for Middlebury in the fifth and later scored on a bases loaded walk by Lind. The Continentals made it a 3-2 game in the sixth when Fuentes hit into a fielder’s choice, plating Henneberger, who had doubled down the left field line. An RBI single from Middlebury’s Lind in the seventh inning scored Merryman, to make it a 4-2 game.
Hamilton rallied in the ninth, scoring twice to tie the game at 4-4. Zachary Becker led off with a single to left and scored when Stephen LaRochelle doubled to left. Andy Dittrich came on in relief of Middlebury starter Eric Truss, who went eight innings. With runners on first and third, Tim Burke executed a successful safety squeeze, as pinch-runner Stephen Wright scored from third to tie the game.
Max Araya was hit by a pitch, as was pinch-hitter Alex Kelly to start the bottom of the inning. Lind walked to load the bases for Garrett Werner. Following a pitching change, the Panthers won the game as a wild pitch went to the backstop, allowing Araya to score the game-winning run.
Although not getting a decision, Truss was solid for the Panthers, allowing two earned runs and six hits over eight innings of work. Dittrich (1-0) picked up the win in relief. Driscoll and Merryman finished the game 3-5, while Rafferty went 2-3 with a double and two runs scored.
Michael Williams (0-4) suffered the loss in relief, as LaRochelle went 2-4 with a double to pace Hamilton.
Middlebury overcame six errors in the game, while leaving 15 runners on base.